Dodgers won't lose key staffers
LOS ANGELES -- DeJon Watson, the Los Angeles Dodgers' assistant general manager for player development, and Logan White, the Dodgers' assistant general manager for scouting, both learned Monday they no longer are under consideration for the Arizona Diamondbacks' vacant general manager's position.
Both Watson and White live in the Phoenix area and were formally interviewed for the job last week by Diamondbacks owner Ken Kendrick, chief executive officer Derrick Hall and a handful of others that included Luis Gonzalez, the former major league outfielder who now works as a special assistant to Hall.
"They called today and said I didn't make it to the finals," Watson said. "It was a great experience having the opportunity to go in there and really share some thoughts with their owner ... and talk about a GM job. I have been working in this game for a long time, and the preparation was exciting. It was a great experience for me to get that first opportunity."
White received the same call from Hall.
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"The Diamondbacks called today and told me I will not be their GM," said White, who interviewed for the position last Tuesday. "I don't know if they narrowed it down, and I didn't ask. Derrick was wonderful, and it was good that I got the opportunity to go through this again. But despite everything that we're dealing with and how our season went down, I am still pretty excited about what we're going to to do in L.A. the next few years.
"It would have been tough to leave L.A., as I have been there a long time."
The Diamondbacks' search appears to have been narrowed to former San Diego Padres GM Kevin Towers and the Diamondbacks' current interim GM, Jerry Dipoto. The ultimate decision may come down to whether the Diamondbacks are willing to meet the salary demands of Towers, which presumably would far exceed that of Dipoto because Towers has 14 years' experience that includes building a Padres team that reached the World Series in 1998.
Until taking over on an interim basis for Josh Byrnes, who was fired by the Diamondbacks earlier this season, Dipoto had never been a GM.
Watson, a graduate of Santa Monica High School who previously served as a scouting director for the Cincinnati Reds, has headed up the Dodgers' minor league operations since 2007. He was promoted to assistant GM the following year. He has played a key role in the development of several current members of the Dodgers, including pitchers Clayton Kershaw, Kenley Jansen, John Ely and Ramon Troncoso, catcher A.J. Ellis and infielder Chin-lung Hu.
White has headed up the Dodgers' amateur scouting department since 2001 and was promoted to assistant GM in 2007. His first draft in 2002 brought the likes of James Loney (first round), Jonathan Broxton (second) and Russell Martin (17th) into the organization. White also has been responsible for drafting current Dodgers players Kershaw, Chad Billingsley and Matt Kemp.
Watson's interview was his first for a GM position. White's was his second, as he also interviewed in September 2007 with the Houston Astros, who ultimately hired former Philadelphia Phillies GM Ed Wade.
White had a previous working relationship with Hall when Hall served as a public relations/communications executive with the Dodgers. Hall left the organization shortly after Frank McCourt purchased the team in February 2004.
Tony Jackson covers the Dodgers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter.